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DVD Reviews

HTF Review: The Marx Brothers - Silver Screen Collection



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#1 of 88 OFFLINE   Jason Perez

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:11 AM


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#2 of 88 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:28 AM

Jason, Thanks for the review, I can't wait until I get my boxset. Crawdaddy

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#3 of 88 OFFLINE   Mike Frezon

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:30 AM

Will the films be available separately? Or, only in the box set?

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#4 of 88 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:31 AM

From what I can gather, only in the boxset.

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#5 of 88 OFFLINE   Garysb

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:42 AM

Thanks for the review. Do you know if there is any difference in picture quality between this release and the old Image release of these films? Is there any reason to double dip?

#6 of 88 OFFLINE   Steve Christou

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:42 AM

Thanks for the review Jason. I'm a huge fan of the Marx Bros, my favorite being Duck Soup in my opinion the greatest comedy film of all time.Posted Image



I was hoping the damaged missing frames from Horse Feathers would be magically restored for this set, but doesn't look like it.

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#7 of 88 OFFLINE   Jason Perez

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Posted November 03 2004 - 03:12 AM

Gary,

Sorry my friend...although I really like these films, I never owned these films on DVD. Darn college tuition and books always kept me from building the DVD collection I would have liked. Posted Image

Indeed, it is only in the last years I have finally been able to acquire decent HT equipment and begin picking up releases I have missed out on. And to be honest, I have never even seen them on DVD, but I wore out my VHS copies (literally) a couple of years back!

With all this in mind, I am counting on one of the many well spoken, knowledgeable members of the Home Theater Forum to chime in with their thoughts on whether or not there is any difference in image quality between this set and prior releases. I know some of you will, so thank you in advance!!! Posted Image Posted Image

And thank you Gary, for your query. I am just sorry I can not be more helpful in this area, but I simply do not have access to the Image DVDs.
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#8 of 88 OFFLINE   ArthurMy

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Posted November 03 2004 - 03:46 AM

There is a whole other thread about this, and I've posted my thoughts there. In short, the Duck Soup transfer is noticably better here than the old Image disc. That's the only Image disc I had, but I believe someone said that the UK box set (which probably uses these same transfers) was better for all the films. Sound-wise, it's also an improvement on Duck Soup. A white line running "several seconds" is, IMO, not even worth mentioning. To my eyes, the worst of the transfers is Coconuts, because a handful of sections seem to be dupe footage with noticably worse quality than the rest - this leads me to believe that parts of the original negative are damaged beyond repair. But, and it's a big but, for any fan of the Marx Brothers, the set is essential and the price is certainly right. I agree with Jason (and said so in the other thread) totally about the extras. An entire bonus disc with fifteen minutes of interviews. What a waste. Certainly, I didn't want to see a program featuring Leonard Maltin or Robert Osborne or any of the other usual suspects - but it would have been nice to do interviews with the kids of the brothers - one of the Today show clips has Bill Marx showing lots of home movies - more of that would have been wonderful. And I'm sure they could have got some Marx Brothers biographer to talk. That part is a shame, but I'm just loving the set anyway, and laughing out loud.

#9 of 88 OFFLINE   John Hodson

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Posted November 03 2004 - 04:16 AM


If the UK box is any guide, dvdbeaver has compared the Image R1 to the Universal R2/R4 Duck Soup and similarly Horse Feathers. Gary has indicated that he will be comparing the films in the R2 box to those in the R1.

Nice review Jason, BTW.
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#10 of 88 OFFLINE   Aaron Silverman

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Posted November 03 2004 - 04:59 AM

It's great that we have this set now, but why they put 4 discs of content onto 6 discs is beyond me (it's not like they couldn't have charged the same price for a 4-disc set).
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#11 of 88 OFFLINE   Garysb

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Posted November 03 2004 - 05:51 AM

Thanks for the information about Image verses Universal disks. My guess about the bonus disk is that it was decided upon after NBC merged with Universal. The movie disks were probably already produced and they decided to add the Today show interviews to the set. It was probably cheaper to add a disk rather then redo the movie disks for the interviews. .

#12 of 88 OFFLINE   Randy A Salas

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Posted November 03 2004 - 06:18 AM

Because Universal will sell the movies individually at some point. With each movie having its own disc, all the studio needs to do is create a single keepcase for each. It's a cost-saving move in the long run.
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#13 of 88 OFFLINE   Peter Svensson

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Posted November 03 2004 - 06:22 AM

Since the R2 editions are available separately, the R1 editions will most likely be released separately.

#14 of 88 OFFLINE   Matt Fisher

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Posted November 03 2004 - 02:54 PM

thanks for the review, I was saddened when I first heard about the lack of extras, but these movies are so much fun to watch in my opinion, decent transfers can hold their own as the value of this box, can't wait for tuesday.

#15 of 88 OFFLINE   Derek Estes

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Posted November 03 2004 - 04:01 PM

Can't wait. Hopefully Mae West will appear next!
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#16 of 88 OFFLINE   Terry H

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Posted November 04 2004 - 11:25 AM

Well, I hate to say it but good transfers from crappy source material can only result in a crappy product. Damn shame they choose not to restore these. Pre-order cancelled.

#17 of 88 OFFLINE   Roger Rollins

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Posted November 04 2004 - 01:27 PM

I'm glad I didn't expect significant improvement from Universal and held on to my Image discs.

#18 of 88 OFFLINE   Patrick McCart

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Posted November 04 2004 - 02:49 PM

Universal DID restore Duck Soup to make a new restoration negative... But keep in mind that a lot of the Paramount films in Universal's ownership have lousy materials to work from. Some lack the original negative and even the original fine-grain positives. Universal's best materials for some of the Marx Bros. films may be dupe negatives... Add: I just read a review for the set on DVDTalk... Universal's remasters have better detail and framing than the Image discs.

#19 of 88 OFFLINE   Brandon Conway

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Posted November 04 2004 - 05:22 PM

And I'm glad Universal is putting these out in at least as good of consition as the Image discs since I didn't want to pay upwards of $200 for the Image discs....

"And now the reprimand, from an American critic. He reproaches me for using film as a sacred & lasting medium, like a painting or a book. He does not believe that filmmaking is an inferior art, but he believes, and quite rightly, that a reel goes quickly, that the public are looking above all for relaxation, that film is fragile and that it is pretentious to express the power of one's soul by such ephemeral and delicate means, that Charlie Chaplin's or Buster Keaton's first films can only be seen on very rare and badly spoiled prints. I add that the cinema is making daily progress and that eventually films that we consider marvelous today will soon be forgotten because of new dimensions & colour. This is true. But for 4 weeks this film [The Blood of a Poet] has been shown to audiences that have been so attentive, so eager & so warm, that I wonder after all there is not an anonymous public who are looking for more than relaxation in the cinema." - Jean Cocteau, 1932


#20 of 88 OFFLINE   ArthurMy

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Posted November 04 2004 - 05:49 PM

I'll say it again: Duck Soup is significantly better than the Image disc, and the others, while they may or may not be derived from the same source material, are free of the digital artifacts of the Image discs (many of those early Image titles have artifacts and don't look so hot). I don't have the others now but I've seen them and the Universal set is better. Significantly, in the case of Duck Soup, and smoother in the case of the other films. I say bravo to Universal for making such an attractive set at a reasonable price. Others who disagree, are free to hold on to their Image discs. Posted Image





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